America’s Driver Shortage: How You Can Help Narrow the Talent Gap


Anyone familiar with the trucking industry has heard about new transportation technologies such as drones or driverless trucks. Sounds great for businesses hoping to deliver products quickly, efficiently, and cost-effectively. But those innovations are years away from practical application. What is the immediate solution to resolve the driver shortage occurring in America right now? Employers may need to get a little creative.

Think Non-Traditionally

According to a study by the American Trucking Association (ATA), in 2018, there was a shortfall of more than 60,000 drivers. Closing this gap is going to require some creative recruiting. The number of female long haul drivers continues to rise. Inclusive marketing and recruiting efforts can help attract women to the industry. The military is another good source of drivers. You know that vets will have an exceptional work ethic, and many of them are already trained.

The ATA is also lobbying to lower the age for commercial drivers to 18. This can increase the number of potential drivers as well as making it possible to attract and train new high school graduates before they move onto other careers.

Increase Pay Rates

According to the National Transportation Institute, average driver salaries have increased to as much as $60,000 per year, making pay a real factor in employers’ ability to attract experienced, qualified drivers. If you want to be in the mix for top drivers, it’s worth taking the time to investigate the market to gain an understanding of competitive pay rates in your area.

Offer Benefits and Bonuses

Because the market for truck drivers has become so competitive, employers need to offer a full slate of benefits, including healthcare, paid time off, 401k, and other perks to attract drivers. You can also offer sign-on and retention bonuses, or referral awards for drivers who connect you with their friends and colleagues. Free training is another popular option, as well as tuition reimbursement.

Work With a Specialized Staffing Firm

A staffing firm with expertise in providing long haul drivers to employers can help you build a talent pool to draw from when you need drivers you can count on.  Contact us today to get started.

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